United states Senator from NJ, Senator Robert Menendez, has been indicted by the Feds for corruption. The long twisted story isn’t worth detailing here because we have seen it all before.
The excuse his attorney has offered isn’t all that unique either. Here is how it goes:
“My client was friends with the person giving him personal gifts so it wasn’t illegal.”
That is exactly the defense NJ Senator Torricelli before he walked away from his Senate seat. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/ballot_box/2001/04/the_torch_flames_out.html
The lawyer for Menendez is also trying to compare the “win” Senator John Edwards had when he was found not guilty, on one count, of accepting cash for his mistress payments from an elderly and senile “friend,” with the current Senator Menendez indictment because, he is arguing Menendez received money and the services of very young ladies from his “friend.”
In the case of Senator Edwards, he was not re-tried in North Carolina on several charges that ended in mistrials. So he walked away.
Former Alaska US Senator, Ted Stevens, who was tried and convicted in Washington DC, not his home state of Alaska, was indicted on charges that were laughably flimsy. Check Wikipedia for evidence of what the public heard about the case. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ted_Stevens
Senator Steven’s friend put a second story on an a-frame summer camp and it was torn down by the local building inspector so Senator Stevens had some other company re-d- the construction. Apparently oil field workers don’t know how to frame a substructure to building codes. That is how Stevens had so much money spent by his “friend” on the remodeling job.
The other contractor was scheduled out of his opportunity to testify on Steven’s behalf and a questionable DC jury found Senator Stevens guilty. One juror even started a web site to joke about the conviction. Another was a former reporter from the Washington Post. The judge almost stopped the case several times because of prosecutorial misconduct.
Menendez will be tried by a Jew Jersey jury unlike the previous NJ Senator who was convicted in ABSCAM, Senator Harrison Williams. He was tried in NY.
The interesting thing with the Menendez trial will be who else gets dragged into the cesspool. Maybe Nevada Senator Harry Reid will finally get what’s coming to him? He and Menendez share a sordid reputation for enriching themselves.
Keep an eye on where the feds steer the trials.